In 1967, ahead of the last Australian referendum regarding First Nations people, Uncle Bob Anderson stationed himself with a table and chair at a tram stop in central Brisbane. From this spot, he passionately engaged with passersby, highlighting that Australia counted its livestock but not its Indigenous population. He’d ask, “Should they be counted too?”
Now, 56 years later, the Ngugi Elder, his wispy white hair sheltered under a straw hat, sat in the scorching Brisbane sun, lending his support to another referendum concerning his people.
Meanwhile, thousands of individuals gathered for “Walk for Yes” rallies in various Australian cities in preparation for the October 14 vote. On that day, 17.5 million registered voters will decide whether Australia should amend its constitution to establish a permanent body comprising First Nations people to advise the government on matters affecting them.
At the age of 94, Uncle Bob underscores that a Yes vote is not only significant for him personally but for the entire nation.